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At the Rink blog

Gaustad to make Predators debut

Saturday, 03.03.2012 / 2:41 PM

By Alain Poupart - NHL.com Correspondent / At the Rink blog

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At the Rink blog
Gaustad to make Predators debut
SUNRISE, Fla. — After sitting out Wednesday's game at Carolina, Paul Gaustad will make his Nashville debut Saturday night at Florida.

"I'm excited," the 30-year-old center said. "I'm looking forward. It's been a good week trying to get adjusted and acclimated. Still got to be patient, a little trial-and-error, system-wise, but I'm excited to play tonight.

"I'm going to try to approach it as any other game. That's what's made me successful and that's what I'm going to try to do tonight."

Gaustad was acquired from Buffalo at the NHL Trade Deadline on Monday in exchange for a first-round pick in this year's NHL Draft. The Predators also got a 2013 fourth-round pick in the deal.

Coach Barry Trotz said he was looking forward to seeing first-hand what Gaustad could add to this team.

"He's a big body, he's a draw guy and gives us a little more weight on the puck and physicality," Trotz said. "It makes us real solid. We can move parts around to have four pretty good lines when we want to."

Gaustad, who had seven goals and 10 assists in 56 games with Buffalo this season, has spent the week trying to get acclimated to his new team.

He missed Wednesday's 4-3 loss at Carolina because of an upper-body injury.

"It was tough for me," Gaustad said. "I wanted to play. They were really good about giving me some rest to rest up a couple of injuries that I've been having. It's healed up nicely and everything is looking good."

PREDATORS

Forwards
Sergei Kostitsyn   --   Mike Fisher   --   Martin Erat
Andrei Kostitsyn  --  David Legwand  --  Patric Hornqvist
Colin Wilson  --  Nick Spaling  --  Jordin Tootoo
Gabriel Bourque  --  Paul Gaustad  --  Brandon Yip

Defensemen
Ryan Suter  --  Shea Weber
Roman Josi  --  Hal Gill
Francis Bouillon  --  Jack Hillen

Goalies
Pekka Rinne
Anders Lindback
Quote of the Day

He is, in my opinion, one of the best defensemen in the NHL and continuing to grow. I think his game, from an offensive standpoint, he continues to drive our offense... I think there's still tremendous upside for Oliver.

— Coyotes GM Don Maloney on defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson